It seems like just yesterday that the world was ready to nail the lid on the coffin of daytime soap operas. Ratings were low across the board, and a slew of sudsers — “Guiding Light,” “As the World Turns,” “All My Children” and “One Life to Live” — were cancelled, leaving only “Days of our Lives,” “General Hospital,” “The Bold and the Beautiful” and “The Young and the Restless” on the air. But to the surprise of critics and many soap fans, 2013 saw a drastic turnaround: All four remaining soap operas saw a significant increase in ratings, and “The Young and the Restless” once again made a list of the top 10 most-searched television programs of the year, among popular series like “Breaking Bad” and “The Walking Dead.” So why the complete 180 in daytime soap popularity?
Soap Opera Network recently attended an event at The National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences, where soap opera insiders like John McCook (Eric Forrester, “B&B”), Anthony Geary (Luke Spencer, “GH”), Marnie Saaita (casting director for “DAYS”) and Michael Maloney (author of “The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell: Creator of The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful”) discussed the recent resurgence and more. Read on to find out what these soap opera experts had to say about the genre’s past, present and future!
You’ve no doubt devoured the hard cover version of The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell, the biography detailing the late daytime legend, former talk show host and “The Young and the Restless” and “The Bold and the Beautiful” creator, and now there’s a lighter version you can easily carry to the beach this summer!
In a report by Variety, Michael Maloney talks with “General Hospital’s” leading man, Anthony Geary (Luke Spencer), who explains that the renewed success of the soap can be directly credited to its head writer and executive producer.
“Our 50th year could have come and gone with a (simple) ‘Wow,’” said Geary. “But Frank [Valentini, EP] and Ron [Carlivati, HW] have been determined to make it something special for the audience. The ratings are showing that they’ve already decided to achieve that.”
Since it was first announced that Prospect Park’s The OnLine Network was looking to once again revive “All My Children” and “One Life to Live,” after they were canceled by ABC in 2011, it has been said that the company planned to take the shows into a sexier and edgier environment. In a recent teaser released by iTunes for its launch of the two soaps, Erika Slezak (Victoria Lord, “OLTL”) is heard saying, “My agent said, ‘What do you want in this contract?’ I said, ‘No nudity!” Fans shouldn’t expect anything too racy on either show as Prospect Park co-founder Rich Frank admitted to Michael Maloney, Contributing Editor at Bauer Publishing for Soaps In Depth, in an interview with Variety. “We are going to be a little hotter and sexier,” said Frank. He added, “That doesn’t mean we’ll be doing anything that’s offensive. We’re trying to be contemporary and have storylines that are relevant to people’s lives.”
Soaps In Depth is reporting that CBS’ “The Bold and the Beautiful” is about to lose another “core four” member as Susan Flannery (Stephanie Forrester) has informed producers and the shows writing team that she plans to leave the series at the end of her newly signed short-term contract. Flannery, like the departing Ronn Moss (soon-to-be ex-Ridge Forrester), has been with the show since it debuted on March 23, 1987 – more than 25 years ago!
With Katherine Kelly Lang (Brooke Forrester) renewing her contract late last week, that leaves John McCook (Eric Forrester) as the only core member whose status with the show remains a mystery.
According to In Depth, Flannery opted to sign a new short-term deal in order for the shows writers to adequately write her character out of the series. Unlike Moss, however, viewers shouldn’t expect the show to recast Stephanie Forrester as head writer Bradley Bell indicated they would do with the character of Ridge Forrester sometime down the road.
A representative for the soap did not immediately respond to a request for comment at press time to Soap Opera Network.
On Saturday, August 18, Flannery joined Moss and “The Young and the Restless” stars Doug Davidson (Paul Williams) and Tracey E. Bregman (Lauren Fenmore) for “The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell” book signing. Co-authors Lee Phillip Bell and Michael Maloney were also in attendance.
Soap Opera Network has learned that Susan Flannery (Stephanie Forrester, “The Bold and the Beautiful”) has been added to the “Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell” book signing being held today from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM at Barnes & Noble located at 4820 Telephone Road Ventura, CA 93003.
As previously reported, Ronn Moss (Ridge Forrester, “The Bold and the Beautiful”), Doug Davidson (Paul Williams, “The Young and the Restless”) and Tracey E. Bregman (Lauren Fenmore, “The Young and the Restless”) will join co-authors Lee Phillip Bell and Michael Maloney at the wristband required event (see full details below).
Per a representative for the book store:
Questions or Concerns? Call (805) 339-0990 to speak to a customer service representative.
For those of you attending the Saturday, August 18 book signing of “The Young and the Restless Life of William J. Bell,” with co-authors Lee Phillip Bell and Michael Maloney, along with Ronn Moss (Ridge Forrester, “The Bold and the Beautiful”), Doug Davidson (Paul Williams, “The Young and the Restless”) and Tracey E. Bregman (Lauren Fenmore, “The Young and the Restless”), who are all scheduled to attend, please take note of the following information courtesy of Barnes & Noble Ventura, which will be hosting the event.
Per a representative for the book store:
Barnes & Noble
4820 Telephone Road,
Ventura, CA 93003
UPDATE, MONDAY, AUGUST 13 7:32 PM ET: Via a posting on his Facebook page, Moss has confirmed he will be attending the book signing this Saturday at Barnes & Noble.
PREVIOUS, SATURDAY, AUGUST 11 8:17 PM ET: On Saturday, August 18, Lee Phillip Bell (pictured right, with William J. Bell) and Michael Maloney (Soaps in Depth), co-authors of “The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell” will be signing copies of their book at Barnes & Noble Ventura from 2:00 PM to 4:00 PM PT.
Joining the two will be “The Young and the Restless” stars Doug Davidson (Paul Williams) and Tracey E. Bregman (Lauren Fenmore). “The Bold and the Beautiful’s” Ronn Moss (Ridge Forrester) is also scheduled to attend, although it is unclear at this time if he will still take part after it was recently announced he would be leaving the drama series after a reported salary dispute resulted in his contract not being renewed.
Please Note: This is a wristband event.
According to Entertainment Weekly‘s Tanner Stransky, CBS’ “The Bold and the Beautiful” is about to lose 25 year veteran Ronn Moss (Ridge Forrester) after a contract dispute between the actor and the soap opera over salary hit a snag. A rep for Bell-Phillip Television, which produces “B&B,” confirmed Moss’ exit to Weekly.
“Ronn has spent an amazing 25 years with ‘B&B,’” the rep for “B&B” said in a statement. “We will always consider him family, and we wish him only the best in all of his future endeavors.”
Moss will film his final episode on Tuesday, August 14, with his final airdate expected sometime in September.
Moss was expected to appear at Barnes & Nobles Ventura (4820 Telephone Road Ventura, CA 93003) along with “Y&R” stars Doug Davidson (Paul Williams) and Tracey E. Bregman (Lauren Fenmore) on Saturday, August 18 for a book signing of “The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell” co-written by Soaps in Depth‘s Michael Maloney and Lee Phillip Bell. It is unclear at this time whether Moss will still be attending the event.
Since “The Bold and the Beautiful” debuted March 23, 1987 on CBS, only Moss, Susan Flannery (Stephanie Forrester), Katherine Kelly Lang (Brooke Forrester) and John McCook (Eric Forrester) have remained part of its core cast.
(SoapOperaNetwork.com) — On Friday, June 1, 2012, Source Books (publisher of the recent “Days of our Lives” series of novels and coffee books) has scheduled the hardcover release of “The Young and Restless Life of William J. Bell: Creator of The Young and the Restless and The Bold and the Beautiful,” which covers the life and times of one of daytime’s most creative minds.
For the first time fans will be able to discover the true stories behind the creation and growth of the most popular and iconic soap operas of all time, and they’ll learn about the man behind their favorite storylines. Filled with dramatic turns, dangerous risks, and an overall devotion to bringing life to the show, this biography will offer fans a backstage pass to the fascinating world of soaps! Bill Bell worked from a love of his characters and his family, and was never afraid to fight for what he knew to be important to both. For any fans of Bill’s shows or anyone working on creating dramas, this is an unprecedented look into the life of one of the men who did it best.
The book was co-written by Soaps in Depth contributing editor Michael Maloney and Bell’s wife Lee Phillip Bell, with Foreword by former “Y&R” star David Hasselhoff.